Better afternoon today with Garcia doing the business nicely and Carnageo running on having blown the start, it really is Hamilton’s Achilles heel!
Quality card at Sandown, notebook and wallet at the ready. Doncaster is more about quantity!
#startracking Friday runners
Sandown 1.20 CHIEF WHIP US bred son of Giants Causeway cost Messrs Magnier, Tabor and Smith $250K and is not at Coolmore but with Richard Hannon. Only ran the once as a 2yo but couldn’t have been much more impressive. Out OK, travelled well but had to sit and suffer just behind the leaders waiting for a gap but when he did get daylight he really quickened up in the style of a good horse. The 2nd and 3rd have both won since suggesting Chief Whip is an OR95+ horse and possibly a Group contender. He has an entry in the Irish 2000 Guineas. That run was at the end of July and he had plenty of entries later but never appeared, which suggests an issue or two?
As I have waited so long for this class act and the booking of Ryan Moore catches the eye and he is a two star** win selection @ 7/2 with Coral and PP.
Sandown 1.20 MIDHMAAR Won once from six starts as a 2yo but now as a gelded 3yo he could be a handicapping money spinner. He was green on debut, ground was Soft on his second run and on his third run in a maiden on the AW at Lingfield ran into two OR90+ horses! He comfortably made all in a C3 8F nursery on Good to Firm at Salisbury. Stepped up to C2 8F at Doncaster he was too keen early and wouldn’t settle but was still only beaten 1¼L in fifth. On his final run in a C4 nursery over Ripon’s 8F round a bend he was last away in a field of 13, intended or not, but he settled, travelled and stormed up the straight, only to be blocked twice and still got to second beaten only by the progressive Move Up. Ideal conditions for this son of Iffraaj would be 8F on Good to Firm with some pace on and the chance of cover. His current rating is 84 and very workable. An early season win and he could be an Ascot Britannia candidate.
He is a must one star* each way selection at a massive 22/1 (!!) with Betfred.
Sandown 2.20 MIDTERM Currently second favourite for the Epsom Derby at 10/1 after just one winning run in an October C4 Newbury maiden over a mile. Absolutely bred in the purple, mum Midday dad Galileo, and despite drifting in the market (6/1-8/1) his performance was stunning. RP analysis, “Dwelt, held up towards rear, headway over 1f out and brought wide of others near stands’ rail, strong run to lead well inside final furlong.” Makes his seasonal reappearance in the G3 10f Sandown Classic Trial and the racing world eagerly awaits!
Sir Michael Stoute’s 3yo’s currently rock and this blueblood is a three star*** win selection @ 6/5 with PP.
Sandown 2.20 VENTURA STORM Tim Palin, racing manager for Middleham Park Racing said after his win at Newmarket last August, “On the race time he didn’t look a Group-race winner on Friday but they went a muddling early pace and visually he looked a Pattern performer and that is in keeping with what Richard Hannon has thought for a while. It would be a huge leap of faith to say he is a good as Toormore as he was a champion two-year-old, but physically he is in his kind of mould. He has at least the same level of ability as Kool Kompany and will improve throughout the season. He is definitely a Group-race performer north of a hundred (rating), whether that is 102, 112 or 122, I don’t know but he is heading in the right direction.” He also won his next race, a C4 Conditions at Salisbury but then came badly unstuck when stepped up to G1 at Longchamp in the Prix Jean-Luc Languedoc in October. He starts his 3yo campaign in the Listed Fielden Stakes at the Craven meeting over 9F.
Ventura Storm Dwarfed by the other three but took trail, led 2F out and saw it out well.
Trainer Richard Hannon told the RP “”Ventura Storm is a lovely horse and Ryan Moore said he would get a mile and a quarter no problem. He liked this sort of ground and we may have a look at something like the Group 3 Tercentenary Stakes at Royal Ascot. Mine have been needing the run but he’s got away with it and he’ll be better next time.” Middleham’s racing manager Tim Palin added: “He is in the German 2000 Guineas but that won’t happen. He’ll be in the Dante and the French Derby and the Italian Derby. He could go somewhere before the French Derby, but would go straight to Italy. As Richard said, when you’re in the promised land, it might be worth having a shot at the Dante and French Derby.”“Ventura Storm is a lovely horse and Ryan Moore said he would get a mile and a quarter no problem,” said Hannon.”He liked this sort of ground and we may have a look at something like the Group 3 Tercentenary Stakes at Royal Ascot. VENTURA STORM has been declared to run in the GROUP 3 classic trial @Sandownpark on Friday. He will be ridden by Frankie. Tom Palin @tpalin 11am Weds.
He is all guts and race fitness but lack of size and scope may catch him out here. Watching Brief.
Doncaster 3.55 GALLIPOLI This son of Dandy Man looks every inch a sprinter and won well, if a little wayward, on debut over 5F on Town Moor before running on well to be 4th in a C2 novice stakes around a tricky Beverley in late May. Not seen since, #amazingMrFahey reasoning “He has always been a big horse and we’ve given him time to fill into his frame. Gallipoli is a work in progress but he has done very well over the winter.”
Fahey has his string firing and his depth of 3yo’s means he should know where he stands. Any bet now on Gallipoli is surely at worse only money lent, so he is a one star* win selection @ 9/1 with Coral.
Doncaster 3.55 ANCIENT ASTRONAUT Fourth to Stamp Hill (should be in your #startracker!) at Pontefract. The second, Reflektor, has already won since. The form could be strong, he is a one star* win selection @ 12/1 with Ladbrokes.
DONCASTER 2:10 Oak Bluffs A win in his turn low grade sprinter. Not for me. Watching Brief.
SANDOWN 2:55 Gabrial bet365 Mile (Group 2) Got to love this beast and Dr. K! He was placed in the Sussex mile and the QEII at G1 level and has earned connections over £400K in place money as well as win in Medan and the Lincoln and the Doncaster Mile on Town Moor. Will no doubt be ridden to pick up the pieces but he is no betting medium! Could be interesting to see if Ryan Moore can get a tune out of him?
DONCASTER 3:55 Gallipoli I’m Backing Lewis Ashley Modular Buildings Handicap SEE ABOVE
Sandown 4.05 ATONE A Juddmonte homebred filly by Oasis Dream out of Midsummer (placed at 12F at Listed level). Most of Atones sisters are now mares around the world. Midsummer did produce Midsummer Sun who was placed in G3’s in Australia. Has to be a watching brief as Atone makes her debut at three.
Sandown 4.35 SHALL WE Niarchos homebred by Dansili out of a Saddlers Wells mare, so worth her weight in gold. Had a spin on the Tapeta at Wolverhampton last November when a very respectable staying on second to Khaleesy. Luna Mare was third when trained by Richard Fahey (may still be!!). only two companies priced up @5/2 and 7/2. Update in the morning as both of those quotes are a bit tight!
Sandown 4.05 STARGAZER Let’s hope there is no Jack Hobbs lurking in this field! Stargazer is owned by Michael Tabor. Sired by Canford Cliffs. Both facts make him of interest. He was a progressive 2yo (432) and his last two runs behind Move Up and Paris Protocol were above average and he goes handicapping off OR87 in this C3 10F event. 15/2 with Coral seems a fair price and he is a one star* each way selection.
Doncaster 5.25 IMPEDIMENT This gelded son of Pivotal cost £90K and had three spins as a 2yo all resulting in midfield mediocrity. Makes his handicap debut over 12F off just OR65 carrying bottom weight in a C4 handicap on Town Moor. Has to be a Watching Brief.